03/21/2009 05:12 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Post-Its On the Baby

The other night I was woken up by the Juban Princeling's cries. I checked the clock: 3:30 am. No way he needed to eat -- husband had fed him before coming to bed, and the Princeling is pretty good about sleeping mostly through the night. But it was my night to get up with him, so I went to try to console the Princeling back to sleep.

Let me preface this next part by explaining that while I am a patient, loving, and nurturing woman by day, I turn into a murderous she-beast when I'm sleeping. Sleep is sacred to me. Husband even likes to differentiate between "Normal Meredith" and "Sleepy Meredith." Normal Meredith has a sense of humor and loves her husband. Sleepy Meredith is nasty, mean, and has been known to shove poor Husband away when he gives her a good-night kiss while she's falling asleep.

Thankfully, when the Juban Princeling has needs during the night and it's my night, Sleepy Meredith takes a backseat to Mommy Meredith. Which is not to imply that Mommy Meredith doesn't mind getting up at 3:30 am -- she does -- she's just less...hostile about it. Because he's just a baby. Unlike his father, he doesn't know any better.

Back to the night in question. At 3:30 am I was convinced the Princeling just needed a little soothing back to sleep. As I stepped gingerly into the nursery I heard what sounded like paper being crinkled up. Surely that noise was either a figment of my imagination, or coming from one of our neighbors. (The walls of most Manhattan apartments are made of paper towels.) But as I got closer to the Princeling's crib, the noise was clearly coming from him. No one has their best brain moments at 3:30am, least of all me, so my first thought was that he had somehow managed to escape his diaper. I felt through the Sleep Sack: nope, diaper was still on. I then wondered if it was the tag from the Sleep Sack: nope, whatever it was, it was too big for a tag. Finally, in the dark, I unzipped the bottom of the Sleep Sack just a little and fished around inside. While noticing that the Princeling was pantsless, I pulled out a piece of paper the size and shape of a square Post-It. I wondered: did I leave a note lying around and it got stuck to the baby before his father put him to bed? And what happened to his pants? As I zipped the Sleep Sack closed again, rubbed the Princeling's belly and head and "Shhhhh..."ed him back to sleep, it occurred to me that maybe this wasn't a mistake.

Husband and I have been known to leave funny little Post-Its for each other in random places. Did he...but no. He couldn't have.

Things I expect at 3:30 am:
*Getting up to go to the bathroom
*Feeding or soothing my baby
*One of my drunk neighbors accidentally locking themselves out and buzzing our apartment to be let in
*The chick from "The Ring" coming out of our TV

Things I do not expect at 3:30 am:
*Finding a Post-It stuck to my pantless son's diaper

I went back to our bed and turned on my bedside lamp. If Husband did leave a Post-It on our baby, then I didn't mind waking him up. If he didn't, then I'd apologize. I read the Post-It: "Mr. No Pants. I have no pants."

My husband. Put a Post-It. On our baby.

Let me say that again:

My husband. Put a Post-It. On our baby. Overnight. For me to find. My husband, who graduated magna-cum-laude from his law school, stuck a Post-It to our baby's diaper when he put him to bed for the night.


Husband: "I put him to sleep without his pants on. I thought you'd think this was funny!"

I tried to go back to sleep, but the Princeling clearly had other ideas. He wanted to eat. I got up, fed him, and put him back down. Before going back to bed I tiptoed out to our desk and wrote a Post-It. I went back to bed and smacked it onto my sleeping husband's face, which had the desired effect of startling him awake. He turned on his own bedside lamp and read my note: "You're an idiot."

Husband: "Whatever, mine was funny and you know it."

In the light of day, yes, it was funny. But that was dangerous of Husband to try that with Sleepy Meredith. As he left for work in the morning, I kissed him goodbye and told him he's lucky to have lived through the night.